Tamil Nadu law regulating online games “makes no sense”: Rajeev Chandrasekhar

As per the rules three types of games are not allowed — online games that involve betting, wagering, online games that involve addiction and online games that involve user harm, toxicity against women, religion and are anti-children, the Minister explained

Published - July 07, 2023 11:37 pm IST - CHENNAI

Union Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar on Friday said the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Online Gambling and Regulation of Online Games Act 2022 “makes no sense” to him.

“I know Tamil Nadu has come out with a law. But it makes no sense to me that the State government will regulate a participant on the internet. It is not possible,” he said responding to a query during a media interaction in Chennai.

The online gaming companies have challenged the constitutional validity of the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Online Gambling and Regulation of Online Games Act 2022 before the Madras High Court.

“How do you regulate online betting or online gambling? You cannot,” Mr. Chandrasekhar said.

One can be sitting in Bengaluru and running online betting. How can the Tamil Nadu law regulate that, he questioned.

Mr. Chandrasekhar said the Centre had notified the online gaming rules after three months of consultation.

As per the rules three types of games are not allowed — Online games that involve betting, wagering, online games that involve addiction and online games that involve user harm, toxicity against women, religion and are anti-children, he explained.

A regulatory body will look at every online game and decide on whether the game is permissible or not, Mr. Chandrasekhar said.

He said a few have applied for having self-regulatory bodies and the government will study it and said a lot of aspects have to be carefully considered given the sensitive nature of online gaming.

Mr. Chandrasekhar also said India will soon have a semiconductor fab manufacturing unit and also a semiconductor research system.

“India is going to be a player in the semiconductor value chain and we are going to end up doing in 10 years, what China took 30 years to do and failed,” he said.

Mr. Chandrasekhar said in the next three-four years India will have a fully competitive world-class semiconductor ecosystem.

He said India has set a $300 billion electronics manufacturing target by 2025-26, out of which $120 billion will be exports. Out of $120 billion, $95 billion is mobile phone exports and the rest of it will be IT hardware, and medical.

Earlier addressing at the 113th annual general meeting of the Southern India Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI), Mr. Chandrasekhar pointed out that Pre-2014, the digital economy was 3-3.5% of total GDP.

“We are now at 10% and by 2026, our target is to make it 20% of the GDP,“ he said.

He also inaugurated the indigenously developed Medical Linear Accelerator (LINAC) System deployed at Adyar Cancer Hospital.

The Siddharth 6 MV Medical LINAC is an advanced radiation therapy machine developed by Society For Applied Microwave Electronics Engineering and Research (SAMEER)-Centre. The Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology had funded the development of 6 MV LINAC for making cancer treatment affordable.

Mr. Chandrasekhar also inaugurated the Electromagnetic Interference and Compatibility laboratories at SAMEER-Centre for Electromagnetics, Chennai. The laboratories will be utilised to qualify the electronic equipment and systems for military and civilian applications.

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